Worth Watching: Remembering Super Bowl Ads, ‘Real Sports’ on Football, A Scientific Legend on ‘Project Blue Book’


A selective critical checklist of notable Tuesday TV:

Super Bowl Greatest Commercials 2019 (8/7c, CBS): This is one of the few new network offerings on a night that was supposed to be dominated by the State of the Union address — postponed to a future date because of the government shutdown. Helping hype the one night of the year people actually pay attention to (as opposed to flee) ads on TV, Boomer Esiason and NCIS: LA’s Daniela Ruah host the annual look back at the most memorable Super Bowl ads in TV history. Viewers can vote live for what they feel is the funniest commercials ever, and Entertainment Tonight’s Kevin Frazier goes behind the scenes of some of this year’s new ad campaigns.

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The Dude and Carrie Bradshaw raise a glass to Stella Artois and more.

Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel (10/9c, HBO): The monthly edition of the acclaimed sports newsmagazine also has football on its mind. Correspondent Jon Frankel profiles ESPN’s prolific NFL insider/analyst Adam Schefter, and Bernard Goldberg presents an investigative report on studies of the changing demographics of the sport. In particular, whether children from upscale homes are leaving the sport over parental fears of concussions, while participation is gaining among children from homes relying on government assistance.

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Plus, details on the National Anthem and the recent backlash.

Project Blue Book (10/9c, History): The so-called “real-life X-Files” series features a real-life historical figure, when Dr. Hynek (Aiden Gillen) heads to Alabama to investigate another possible UFO sighting and comes face to face with a famous peer from Germany: Wernher von Braun, the pioneering aerospace engineer. He’s part of the top-secret “Operation Paperclip,” in which German scientists and engineers were brought to the U.S. after WWII, with the hopes of tapping their knowledge to give American an upper hand in the Space Race and Cold War. But what’s really going on in Alabama could have more cosmic consequences.

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Star Aidan Gillen is the show's 'greatest asset.'

Inside Tuesday TV: England’s longest-running crime drama, the forensic procedural Silent Witness, begins streaming episodes from its 22nd season on Britbox… PBS’s Finding Your Roots (8/7c, check local listings at pbs.org) reveals the family histories of an eclectic trio of celebrities: Kal Penn, Sheryl Sandberg and Marisa Tomei… Office politics becomes an issue on Freeform’s Good Trouble (8/7c) when Judge Wilson (Roger Bart) invites Callie (Maia Mitchell) and the other clerks over to a BBQ that goes awry, and Mariana (Cierra Ramirez) begins to consider the lack of diversity within her own workplace.